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Growing Your Own Food – 7 Easy Methods That Work

Container Garden

It would be hard to find something that’s as simple and beneficial as growing your own food.  It’s so satisfying to be able to harvest your own fresh herbs and vegetables, free of pesticides and other chemicals.  And you avoid the extra charges you pay when buying from a supermarket.  Another advantage is that producing your own food gives you some very beneficial outside exercise.  A good day in the garden always leads to a good night of restful sleep.  Here are a few of the many ways you can grow your own food– read on to see which one is right for you.

Video – Growing Your Own Food

1. A Traditional Garden (Horizontal Garden)

A traditional in-ground or raised bed garden is probably the most common method of growing your own food.  It could be planted in rows, or you could take the more natural route and scatter your plantings.  Some will use chemicals and pesticides to keep their plants bug free (hopefully you won’t do that), while others will use organic soils and natural pesticides.  EWG publishes a “Dirty Dozen” list of the produce that is usually treated with toxic pesticides, as well as a “Clean Fifteen” list of the produce that usually isn’t treated with pesticides.  Get these lists here.

2. Container Garden

Buckets, boxes, pots, jars, and just about any type of container could be used if you’re going to be limited for space or grow your garden indoors.  You can grow nearly all the same veggies as you could in a traditional garden, and you’re only limited by the size of the container.  See our article on “Growing Vegetables in Containers” for more information.

3. Hydroponics – Growing Your Own Food Without Soil

For a unique experience when producing your own food, you can try hydroponics, which allows you to grow food using water instead of soil.  Plants grown hydroponically are placed in a bed of clay pellets, pebbles, or some other filler.  The plant roots are in nutrient-rich water that is circulated by a pump.  Hydroponic rigs can be very large, but there are also many small home kits available.  If you would like to learn more about hydroponics, as well as building your own system, see this information.

4. Vertical Garden

If you can’t go “flat out” with a traditional garden, then maybe a vertical garden will work for you.  If you don’t have much space vertical gardens are a good option.  You can also design the garden to avoid stooping or bending to take care of the plants.  You could also combine a vertical garden with a traditional garden bed by using trellises or poles and growing naturally vining plants such as cucumbers and pole beans.

5. Aquaponics – Growing Your Own Food With the Help of Fish

If you would like to raise plants and also raise fish for pets or food, then aquaponics could be for you.  Aquaponics is basically the same thing as hydroponics but with fish added to the system. These systems can also use snails, crayfish, or prawns along with fish.  Aquaponics kits can be small enough to hold just one fish.  Waste byproducts from the fish are converted to nitrates.  The byproducts are then pumped to the root systems of the plants.

6. Plant Some Trees or Berry Bushes

Blueberries, blackberries, or raspberries are a great addition to any garden.  Store-bought berries can never compare to fresh berries picked from your own bushes.  Fruit or nut trees are an excellent way to add some edible options to your backyard, and many of them certainly provide beauty in the springtime when their blossoms open.  A long-term option with nut trees (particularly walnut and black walnut) is that their wood becomes very valuable when the trees mature.

7. Indoor Garden

Not everyone has enough space for an outdoor garden, but everyone usually has some space for an indoor garden.  The kits for indoor gardening usually contain a planter and a built-in LED grow light with a timer.  The grow light is very handy if you can’t put your garden in a sunny spot for at least 6 hours per day.  Most of the indoor garden kits are designed for growing herbs or microgreens, but for larger setups, you could use containers with separate LED grow lights.

Final Thoughts for Growing Your Own Food

Whatever reason you have for producing your own food, there is a way to do it.  Enjoy the fun and satisfaction you can get by growing your own fresh fruits and veggies.

Bob Styer

As a child, I hated gardening. That was mainly because Dad expected us to work in the garden every so often even though we thought play was more important. Over the years, though, I've developed a real appreciation for growing things. Whether you're growing plants for food or to enjoy their beauty, gardening can make your life better. Seize the moment!

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